Imani In The Belly

by Chocolate

Hardcover, 1997



Local notes

398.21 Cho



Troll Communications (1997), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 32 pages


Imani's faith helps her save herself and her children from the belly of the King of Beasts.

Physical description

32 p.; 10.1 inches


0816734666 / 9780816734665



User reviews

LibraryThing member AbigailAdams26
When Imani must travel to the distant market to sell her produce, she warns her children to stay safe near the family hut. But, like children everywhere, they become distracted during the course of their play, and when a herd of wild animals thunders through the village, they are far from shelter. Returning home and discovering that they have been swallowed by the terrible Simba, King of Beasts, Imani sets out to rescue them, ending up in the belly of her enemy. Will she find a way to save herself, her children, and the other villagers trapped in Simba's belly...?

Originally collected in G.M. Theal's 1886 Kaffir Folk Tales, this tale from the Xhosa people of South Africa emphasizes - both through its heroine's name and actions - the importance of faith, when confronted with frightening events. I cannot say that the cut-paper illustrations by Alex Boies were really very appealing - David Wisniewski does this sort of thing so much better - but the story was interesting, and should appeal to young folklore lovers, particularly those looking for South African tales.

One note: the publisher of this book clearly needs to hire better editors and blurb-writers, as the front dust-jacket flap reads: "The rich tapestry of western Africa comes alive in Deborah M. Newton Chocolate's masterful retelling of a Swahili tale." Hard to imagine, since Swahili is spoken in eastern and southern Africa...
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(4 ratings; 4)
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